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Hurricane Barry: $8 to $10 billion in damage and economic loss expected

Hurricane Barry: $8 to $10 billion in damage and economic loss expected

The total damage and economic loss caused by Hurricane Barry is expected to be $8 to $10 billion, based on an analysis of damages expected from flooding caused by very heavy rainfall over several states and storm surge. The estimate includes damage to homes and businesses, as well as their contents and cars, as well as job and wage losses, farm and crop losses, contamination of drinking water wells, infrastructure damage, auxiliary business losses and the long-term impact from flooding, in addition to the lingering health effects resulting from flooding and the disease caused by standing water.

“The rain will be the overwhelming cause of damage and discomfort and threats to life and property,” said AccuWeather founder and CEO Dr. Joel N. Myers. “There will be 10 to 18 inches of rain over a large area this weekend, with the greatest threat for flooding rainfall expected to be in Louisiana, southwestern Mississippi and southern Arkansas.

“It’s going to be a slow-moving storm and will still dump very heavy rains to the north over southeast Arkansas, northwest Mississippi, western Tennessee, southeastern Missouri and western Kentucky where there will be maybe 4 to 8 inches of rain and flooding Monday through Wednesday of next week in those areas,” Myers said.

Barry is making landfall as a Category 1 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale, with maximum sustained winds of 74 to 95 miles per hour.

“With Barry, the bulk of the damage will be caused by excessive rains over a large area coming on top of flooding already in many places, of high water in the streams, creeks and rivers and also the fact that the ground is very saturated and the rain will run off,” Myers said.